Auld Lang Syne (saxophone ensemble)

By: Traditional Scottish song
For: Large mixed ensemble
page one of Auld Lang Syne (saxophone ensemble)

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Traditional Scottish song
Year of composition
Elmars Rudzitis
Easy (Grades 1-3)
3 minutes
World music
License details
For anything not permitted by the above licence then you should contact the publisher first to obtain permission.

The tune to which "Auld Lang Syne" is universally sung is a pentatonic Scots folk melody, probably originally a sprightly dance in a much quicker tempo.

English composer William Shield seems to quote the "Auld Lang Syne" melody briefly at the end of the overture to his opera Rosina, which may be its first recorded use. The contention that Burns borrowed the melody from Shield is for various reasons highly unlikely, although they may very well both have taken it from a common source, possibly a strathspey called The Miller’s Wedding or The Miller’s Daughter. The problem is that tunes based on the same set of dance steps necessarily have a similar rhythm, and even a superficial resemblance in melodic shape may cause a very strong apparent similarity in the tune as a whole. For instance, Burns’ poem "Coming Through the Rye" is sung to a tune that might also be based on the Miller’s Wedding. The origin of the tune of God Save the Queen (q.v.) presents a very similar problem, and for just the same reason, as it is also based on a dance measure. Whatever its source, the "Auld Lang Syne" tune has been used all over the world in various contexts

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